Can Groupthink also be Useful?


 
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Can Groupthink also be Useful?
Probal DasGupta, CEO, United States, Member
Even though Groupthink is largely negative, it is not all bad. Software Engineering has spawned a new software development paradigm that actually utilizes the negative effects of Groupthink for a very positive use.

What is Groupthink?

Janis (1972) defines Groupthink as “A mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members' strivings for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action” (p. 9). Groupthink occurs when a group makes faulty decisions because group pressures lead to a deterioration of “mental efficiency, reality testing, and moral judgment” (Janis, 1972, p. 9).

Janis (1972, 1982) identified at least eight common symptoms of Groupthink:
--1-- Illusion of invulnerability (Creates excessive optimism that encourages taking extreme risks)
--2-- Collective rationalization (Members discount warnings and do not reconsider their assu...Sign up
 

   
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